The Great Debate: Pets in Flats – What Are Your Rights?



The question of whether purchasers or tenants can demand that pets be allowed to live with them in their flats is a topic that has sparked heated discussions and legal debates for quite some time. While the UK is known for its love of animals, it’s also a nation with a significant number of people living in flats or apartments, where pet policies can vary greatly. In this blog, we’ll explore the rights and responsibilities of both property owners and renters when it comes to keeping pets in flats.


Understanding the Landlord-Tenant Dynamic


Before diving into the specifics of pet policies, it’s crucial to understand the legal relationship between landlords and tenants. Landlords have a legal right to set the terms and conditions of their rental agreements, which can include pet policies. Conversely, tenants have rights as well, including the right to a quiet and peaceful enjoyment of their rented property.


Pet Policies in Rental Agreements


The inclusion of pet policies in rental agreements is a common practice. Landlords have the right to impose restrictions on whether pets are allowed in their flats. These restrictions can range from a complete ban on pets to more lenient policies that specify the types and sizes of pets that are permitted.


However, it’s important to note that since January 2021, the UK government has amended its model tenancy agreement to make it easier for renters with pets to find suitable accommodation. These changes encourage landlords to consider allowing pets in their properties, provided that tenants meet certain criteria and agree to adhere to responsible pet ownership guidelines.


Reasonable Pet Policies


A reasonable pet policy should strike a balance between the rights of landlords to protect their property and the rights of tenants to enjoy the companionship of their pets. A reasonable pet policy might include the following considerations:


  1. Pet Deposit: Landlords can ask for an additional security deposit to cover potential damages caused by pets. This deposit should be refundable if no damage occurs.


  1. Pet References: Tenants may be asked to provide references from previous landlords or neighbours to vouch for their responsible pet ownership.


  1. Pet Size and Breed Restrictions: Some landlords may have size or breed restrictions on the pets they allow in their flats.


  1. Responsible Ownership: Tenants should agree to clean up after their pets, prevent excessive noise, and ensure that their pets do not cause a nuisance to neighbours.


  1. Pet Clauses: Specific pet-related clauses should be added to the tenancy agreement, outlining the rights and responsibilities of both parties regarding pets.


Challenging a No-Pet Policy


If a flat has a strict “no-pets” policy, tenants do have some options to challenge it:


  1. Negotiate: Tenants can try to negotiate with the landlord to allow a pet, especially if they have a well-behaved animal and are willing to comply with any reasonable conditions.


  1. Check Local Laws: In some cases, local housing laws may override a “no-pets” policy, so it’s essential to research the specific regulations in your area.


  1. Appeal to a Tribunal: If all else fails, tenants can appeal to a tribunal or court to challenge an unreasonable “no-pets” policy, especially if they believe it infringes on their rights to quiet enjoyment and a family life.




The issue of whether purchasers or tenants can demand pets be allowed to live with them in their flats involves a delicate balance between the rights and responsibilities of landlords and tenants. While landlords have the right to set pet policies, recent changes in tenancy agreements encourage a more lenient approach, making it easier for responsible pet owners to find suitable accommodation. Communication, negotiation, and awareness of local laws are key factors in resolving any disputes regarding pet policies in flats. Ultimately, finding a middle ground that respects the interests of both landlords and tenants can lead to more harmonious living environments for everyone involved.

Landlords and Major Works

The most recent ruling from the Upper Tribunal offers valuable insights into the application of the Building Safety Act 2022 concerning recoverable service charges. Specifically, it pertains to instances where there’s a request to bypass the section 20 consultation procedure for urgent major works.

Usually, if a freeholder landlord plans works that will cost a leaseholder more than £250, they must adhere to the consultation process outlined in section 20 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985 (LTA 1985). However, there’s an exception for urgent works, particularly those related to occupant safety, allowing landlords to apply to the First-tier Tribunal (FtT) for dispensation from the formalities. This exception now includes urgent works under the Building Safety Act 2022 (BSA 2022).

In the case of Adriatic Land 5 Ltd v Long Leaseholders at Hippersley Point [2023] UKUT 271 (LC), the landlord sought dispensation for urgent safety repairs at Hippersley Point. While unconditional dispensation was granted, a condition under section 20C restricted the recovery of application costs from service charges. Despite the landlord’s appeal and subsequent review, the First-tier Tribunal upheld this condition through a costs order, essentially preventing the recovery of application costs via service charges.

The appeal in the Upper Tribunal centered on two key points:

  1. Whether the FtT had the authority to impose a costs condition concerning service charges.
  2. The relevance of Paragraph 9 of Schedule 8 to the BSA 2022, which had just come into effect before the review decision.

The Upper Tribunal ruled that the FtT had erred in its decision by imposing the costs order without input from the involved parties. Furthermore, it emphasized that Paragraph 9 of Schedule 8 in the BSA 2022 outlined that leaseholders aren’t liable for service charge costs related to legal or professional services incurred due to relevant defects after June 28, 2022. This provision protects leaseholders from incurring costs for dispensation applications related to building safety works under the BSA 2022.

Essentially, this ruling signifies a shift in the liability for service charge costs incurred after June 28, 2022, exempting qualifying leaseholders from these expenses. It’s a critical consideration for landlords undertaking urgent property works, as it establishes a cut off for recoverable legal costs from service charges post-June 28, 2022.


If you have any concerns regarding the above, please feel free to contact our property department.

Poor Quality New Build Homes

In recent years, the UK has witnessed a surge in the construction of new homes, promising modernity, comfort, and sustainability. However, amidst this housing boom, a concerning trend has emerged – the increasing prevalence of poor quality in new build properties. From structural defects to inadequate insulation, homeowners are facing a myriad of issues that undermine the very essence of homeownership – security and peace of mind.

At Khan Mather, we believe in advocating for the rights of homeowners and ensuring that they receive the quality they deserve. In this blog post, we delve into the root causes of the problem, its implications, and the legal avenues available to those affected.

Understanding the Causes

The reasons behind the decline in the quality of new build homes are multifaceted. One major factor is the pressure to meet high housing demand, leading to rushed construction schedules and cost-cutting measures by developers. Inadequate oversight and regulation exacerbate the problem, allowing substandard workmanship to go unchecked.

Moreover, the complexity of modern building techniques and materials has created challenges for both builders and inspectors, increasing the likelihood of errors slipping through the cracks.

Implications of Poor Quality New Build Homes for Homeowners

The consequences of purchasing a defective new build home can be devastating. Structural issues, dampness, and poor insulation not only compromise the safety and comfort of residents but also diminish the value of the property. In many cases, homeowners find themselves facing hefty repair bills, legal disputes with developers, and prolonged periods of uncertainty.

Beyond the financial implications, living in a defective property can take a toll on one’s physical and mental well-being, causing stress, frustration, and a sense of insecurity.

Legal Recourse

Fortunately, homeowners are not without recourse when faced with the ordeal of a poorly constructed home. Various legal avenues exist to hold developers accountable and seek redress for damages incurred.

One option is to pursue a claim under the Consumer Rights Act 2015, which provides protection for buyers against goods that are not of satisfactory quality or fit for purpose. Additionally, homeowners may have recourse through the NHBC Buildmark warranty or other structural insurance policies, which cover certain defects within a specified time frame.

Alternatively, if the defects are severe and widespread, homeowners may consider collective legal action, such as a group litigation order, to pool resources and strengthen their case against the developer.

Our Commitment

At Khan Mather, we are committed to standing by homeowners who have been affected by the scourge of poor quality new build homes. Our experienced team of solicitors specializes in construction law and will tirelessly advocate for your rights, guiding you through every step of the legal process with compassion and expertise.

If you find yourself grappling with the distressing reality of a defective new build property, don’t hesitate to reach out to us on 0161 850 9911. Together, we can work towards achieving the justice and resolution you deserve.

A Guide for Leaseholders: Dealing with RAAC Properties



Leasehold property ownership has long been a common way to own a home, especially in urban areas. However, many leaseholders face challenges and uncertainties when it comes to properties built using the Rapidly Applied Affordable Construction (RAAC) method. RAAC is a construction technique that was popular for its speed and cost-effectiveness but has since raised concerns due to issues related to building quality and safety. In this blog, we will discuss what leaseholders can do if their property was built using RAAC and what steps they can take to address potential issues.


Understanding RAAC Construction


RAAC construction is characterized by its rapid assembly of pre-fabricated components, often using lightweight materials. While this approach can deliver homes quickly and at a lower cost, it has also been associated with certain problems such as structural defects, inadequate insulation, and issues with fire safety.


Challenges for Leaseholders


Leaseholders of RAAC properties may face several challenges, including:


  1. Structural Concerns: RAAC properties may be more susceptible to structural issues, such as cracks in walls, due to the construction method. These issues can be costly to repair and may impact the property’s value.


  1. Fire Safety: Some RAAC properties have been found to have inadequate fire safety measures, which can pose significant risks to residents.


  1. Energy Efficiency: RAAC properties may not meet modern energy efficiency standards, resulting in higher energy bills for leaseholders.


  1. Warranty Issues: RAAC builders and developers may no longer be in business, making it difficult to claim on warranties for defects.


Steps for Leaseholders


If you are a leaseholder of an RAAC property, there are several steps you can take to address these challenges:


  1. Review Your Lease Agreement: Start by carefully reviewing your lease agreement to understand your rights and responsibilities as a leaseholder. Pay attention to any clauses related to maintenance and repairs.


  1. Join a Leaseholder Association: Consider joining or forming a leaseholder association with fellow residents. This can provide collective bargaining power and support in dealing with property-related issues.


  1. Seek Legal Advice: If you encounter structural defects, fire safety concerns, or other issues, consult one of our solicitors who specializes in property law. We can help you understand your legal options and potential claims against developers or builders.


  1. Engage with Local Authorities: Contact your local council and fire authority to report any concerns about fire safety or building quality. They may conduct inspections and take action if necessary.


  1. Energy Efficiency Improvements: Investigate energy-efficient upgrades that can improve the performance of your RAAC property. This may include better insulation, efficient heating systems, and double-glazed windows.


  1. Explore the Building Safety Act: Stay informed about developments in building safety legislation, such as the Building Safety Act. This legislation aims to improve building safety standards and may provide additional protections for leaseholders of RAAC properties.


  1. Consider Leasehold Reform: Keep an eye on proposed leasehold reform initiatives, which could change the legal framework for leasehold properties. These reforms may offer solutions for leaseholders facing RAAC-related challenges.




Leaseholders of RAAC properties face unique challenges related to building quality, safety, and energy efficiency. However, by understanding their rights, seeking legal advice, and engaging with local authorities and community organizations, leaseholders can take steps to address these issues. It is essential for leaseholders to stay informed about changes in legislation and actively advocate for their rights and the safety of their homes.


Please call us with any concerns you may have on 0161 850 9911.

Navigating Your First Property Purchase

Buying your first property is an exciting milestone in life, but it can also be a complex and daunting process. As a trusted UK law firm, we understand that our clients often have many questions and concerns when it comes to purchasing their first home. In this blog post, we aim to provide guidance on what to consider when buying your first property in the UK.


  1. Budgeting Wisely


Before diving into the property market, it’s crucial to establish a realistic budget. Take into account your savings, income, and any potential financial assistance, such as loans or gifts from family members. Remember that the purchase price is just one part of the financial equation. You’ll also need to budget for legal fees, survey costs, stamp duty (if applicable), and ongoing expenses like mortgage payments, insurance, and maintenance.


  1. Location, Location, Location


The old adage holds true in property hunting. The location of your new home can significantly affect your lifestyle, commute, and property value. Consider factors like proximity to work, schools, public transport, amenities, and the local community. Think about your long-term plans and how the location aligns with them.


  1. Property Type and Size


Determine the type and size of property that suits your needs. Are you looking for a one-bedroom flat, a family house, or an investment property? Think about your current living situation and how it may evolve over time. Will you need space for a growing family or anticipate downsizing in the future?


  1. New Build vs. Older Property


Each has its advantages and drawbacks. New builds often come with modern amenities and energy-efficient features but may lack character. Older properties can have unique charm but may require more maintenance and renovations. Consider your preferences, budget, and any potential renovation costs.


  1. Property Condition


When viewing potential properties, pay attention to their condition. Are there any visible issues or signs of neglect? It’s wise to hire a qualified surveyor to inspect the property thoroughly. Their report can help you make an informed decision and negotiate the price if necessary.


  1. Legal Matters


Engaging a solicitor or conveyancer is a crucial step in the property-buying process. They will handle the legal aspects, including property searches, contracts, and the transfer of ownership. Ensure you choose a reputable firm with experience in property transactions to guide you through the legal complexities.


  1. Financing Options


Explore your financing options, such as mortgages and government schemes like Help to Buy or Shared Ownership. Different lenders offer various mortgage products, so compare interest rates, terms, and fees to find the best fit for your financial situation.


  1. Additional Costs


In addition to the purchase price, be prepared for other costs like stamp duty land tax (SDLT) or land transaction tax (LTT), depending on the property’s location and value. Your solicitor will help you calculate and pay these fees.


  1. Chain Issues


Property transactions in the UK often involve chains of buyers and sellers. Be prepared for potential delays or complications in the process, especially if you are in a long chain. Communicate openly with your solicitor and estate agent to navigate any issues that arise.


  1. Future Planning


Consider the long-term implications of your property purchase. Are you planning to live in the property indefinitely, or is it an investment for the future? Think about your exit strategy and how the property fits into your overall financial goals.


Purchasing your first property is a significant life event, and it’s natural to have questions and concerns. At our law firm, we’re here to guide you through the process, ensure your interests are protected, and make your property journey as smooth as possible.


If you’re considering buying your first property in the UK, please don’t hesitate to contact our experienced team of solicitors and conveyancers. We’re here to help you navigate the legal intricacies and provide you with the support and advice you need to make informed decisions throughout your property purchase journey.

Enhancing Legal Practice: Should All Law Firms Implement AI-Harvey?



In an era where technological advancements are rapidly transforming various industries, the legal profession is no exception. One significant development gaining attention is the integration of Artificial Intelligence (AI) systems into law firms. Among the prominent AI solutions is AI-Harvey, a cutting-edge platform designed to assist legal professionals in their day-to-day operations. In this blog, we will explore the potential benefits and considerations surrounding the implementation of AI-Harvey in all law firms.


  1. Efficiency and Time Savings


One of the primary advantages of implementing AI-Harvey in law firms is the potential for increased efficiency and time savings. AI-Harvey can streamline numerous time-consuming tasks such as legal research, document review, and contract analysis. By automating these processes, legal professionals can focus on more complex and strategic aspects of their work. Additionally, AI-Harvey’s ability to quickly process vast amounts of data can significantly reduce the time required to prepare cases and respond to clients’ inquiries.


  1. Enhanced Accuracy and Consistency


Another compelling reason for adopting AI-Harvey is its capacity to enhance accuracy and consistency in legal practice. Human error is an inherent risk, and the consequences of mistakes in legal matters can be severe. AI-Harvey, on the other hand, leverages machine learning algorithms to ensure precise and consistent results. By eliminating or minimizing errors, law firms can enhance their credibility, improve client satisfaction, and potentially reduce legal disputes arising from inaccuracies.


  1. Cost Reduction


AI-Harvey’s implementation can lead to substantial cost reductions for law firms. While the initial investment may appear significant, the long-term benefits outweigh the expenses. By automating various tasks, AI-Harvey can reduce the need for manual labor, enabling law firms to allocate their resources more effectively. Additionally, the platform’s ability to handle repetitive and mundane tasks can free up lawyers’ time, allowing them to focus on higher-value work and generate more revenue for the firm.


  1. Augmented Legal Research


Legal research is a crucial aspect of practising law, and AI-Harvey can significantly enhance this process. The platform can analyse vast amounts of legal precedents, statutes, and case law in seconds, providing lawyers with quick and accurate insights. This augmented research capability enables legal professionals to make more informed decisions, develop stronger arguments, and ultimately deliver better outcomes for their clients.


  1. Ethical Considerations and Human Touch


While the implementation of AI-Harvey brings numerous benefits, it is essential to address ethical considerations and the preservation of the human touch in the legal profession. While AI can assist in streamlining tasks and providing insights, it cannot replace the empathy, judgment, and creativity that human lawyers bring to their work. Therefore, it is crucial to strike a balance between utilizing AI-Harvey’s capabilities and ensuring that lawyers continue to provide personalized, client-focused services.




The integration of AI-Harvey in law firms offers compelling advantages, including increased efficiency, enhanced accuracy, cost reduction, and augmented legal research capabilities. However, it is crucial to acknowledge that AI should be seen as a tool to support legal professionals rather than a complete replacement for human expertise. Striking the right balance between leveraging AI technologies and maintaining the human touch is key to harnessing the full potential of AI-Harvey and delivering exceptional legal services to clients.


As the legal profession continues to evolve, law firms should carefully consider the adoption of AI-Harvey, taking into account their unique needs, ethical responsibilities, and the value that AI can bring to their practice. With the right implementation strategy and a focus on collaboration between AI and human lawyers, AI-Harvey has the potential to revolutionize legal practice and pave the way for a more efficient,






As the legal profession continues to evolve, law firms should carefully consider the adoption of AI-Harvey, taking into account their unique needs, ethical responsibilities, and the value that AI can bring to their practice. With the right implementation strategy and a focus on collaboration between AI and human lawyers, AI-Harvey has the potential to revolutionize legal practice and pave the way for a more efficient way or working


As a local family firm, we are not in the position to implement Harvey but the bigger question is if we could, would we?